Brahms - Ein deutsches Requiem
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Label: Challenge Classics
Cat No: CC72738
Number of Discs: 1
Release Date: 18th November 2016
ArtistsRenate Arends (soprano)
Thomas Oliemans (baritone)
Rotterdam Symphony Chorus
The Hague Philharmonic
ConductorJan Willem de Vriend
Between 1865 and 1868 Johannes Brahms composed his masterpiece Ein deutsches Requiem. A large scale work of seven movements for orchestra, choir and soprano and baritone soloists, it is Brahmsís longest work. With the death of his mother in mind, Brahms took a totally different path from his predecessors with the idea of a Requiem - his is a requiem to comfort, it is not a work for the dead, it is music for the living! The narrative and energetic style of De Vriendís conducting gives the Requiem both depth and liveliness.
Dutch conductor Jan Willem de Vriend has received much praise from critics worldwide for his performances and recordings, including, for Challenge Classics, cycles of Beethoven and Mendelssohn Symphonies and the Beethoven Piano Concertos with Hannes Minnaar. In his final season as chief conductor of the Netherlands Symphony Orchestra, he is now one of two principal conductors of the Residentie Orkest (The Hague Philharmonic), along with Nicholas Collon.
In its early years, The Hague Philharmonic was conducted by Henri Viotta, who founded the orchestra in 1904, but it soon attracted composers like Richard Strauss, Igor Stravinsky, Max Reger, Maurice Ravel, Paul Hindemith and Vincent díIndy. Guest conductors included Arturo Toscanini, Bruno Walter, Leonard Bernstein and Hans Knappertsbusch. After World War II, Willem van Otterloo was appointed chief conductor. He led the orchestra from 1949 to 1973 and built a strong reputation by combining high-quality performances with adventurous programming. The chief conductor mantle later passed to Jean Martinon, followed by Ferdinand Leitner, Hans Vonk, Evgeny Svetlanov, Jaap van Zweden and Neeme Jšrvi.
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